A Day In The Life Of A Culinary Student

If you’ve ever dreamed of being a pastry chef, managing a restaurant, or designing a catering menu for events, the journey toward your ideal career begins at culinary school. Before you apply to a program, though, you may want to know what you can expect to do while you’re there. To get a sense of what being a culinary student is all about, here’s a taste of what it’s like to spend your day studying in a culinary arts program.


Any chef will tell you that before you can cook a great meal, you have to set up your workstation by putting everything in its proper place. The mise en place is a crucial step to making sure a professional kitchen runs efficiently, and it’s a skill that every culinary student has to put into practice every day. So before you start each lesson, you’ll have to prepare your assigned workstation by reviewing your daily recipes, assembling your ingredients, and organizing your tools and utensils.


In culinary school, you’ll learn something different every day: new skills to master, new concepts to understand, and new dishes to prepare. Sometimes, you’ll focus on specific cooking methods, such as braising meat or sautéing fish. Other times, you’ll be taught how to prepare various international cuisines or how to navigate the garde manger (the preparation of cold foods). If you’re studying baking and pastry arts, you might have a class on cake decorating or sugar confectionary. Whatever the topic of your daily lesson, you’ll be learning from experienced, knowledgeable, and seasoned professionals.

Hands-on practice

After the instructional portion of the class is over, you’ll have the opportunity to test out your newly acquired knowledge. Using your carefully prepared mise en place, you’ll work alongside your fellow students to practice the techniques and recreate the recipes your instructors have demonstrated. Not only will you sharpen your cooking skills, but by collaborating with your classmates, you’ll also gain the hands-on training needed to succeed in busy, bustling restaurant kitchens.

Tasting, evaluation, and feedback

After the food is prepared, everyone presents their dishes to the class and discusses their experience, reviews the process, and evaluates the end product – and in a culinary class, an evaluation always includes a tasting. You’ll get to sample your own dishes, as well as those of your classmates, while your instructors provide valuable feedback and answer any questions that may have arisen during the lesson and practice.

Field exploration

There are some days when you’ll take your culinary education outside the classroom and into the field. Culinary schools arrange trips to restaurants, bakeries, and commercial kitchens to explore what it’s like to use your skills in a real-world environment and help you establish valuable industry connections. You’ll likely also have guest lectures and campus visits from industry professionals who are eager to share their knowledge with students who are bound to be the next generation of culinary masters.

Launch your culinary career at National Culinary & Baking School

At National Culinary & Baking School, you can turn your culinary career dreams into reality. We offer three different diploma-level programs – in culinary arts, baking and pastry arts, and advanced confectionary and sugar arts – as well as short-term courses in culinary, to help you master specific subjects. With small class sizes, accessible financing options, and a job placement assistance program, we strive to provide the very best education for future culinary artists.

For culinary school in San Diego, call (619) 431-3942 and find out how National Culinary & Baking School can help you live your culinary dreams.